Japanese fans adopt a janitorial role at Qatar World Cup

2nd of December 2022
Japanese fans adopt a janitorial role at Qatar World Cup

Japanese fans reacted true to form following their Costa Rica defeat in Qatar and immediately began removing litter, empty bottles and food debris from the stands after the final whistle had been blown.

The Japanese have become renowned worldwide for their habit of cleaning up after sporting events. Footage of the company's fans wielding blue plastic bags and picking up litter has become commonplace.

The fans in Qatar handed their rubbish bags to stadium workers on their way out, who were clearly delighted with their efforts.

"It's a sign of respect for a place," said Tokyo fan Eiji Hattori clutching a bag filled with bottles, ticket stubs and other stadium detritus. "This place is not ours so we should clean up if we use it."

Japanese fans attending the game said such habits were taught at home and were reinforced at schools, where students from a young age are expected to clean their classrooms and school facilities on a regular basis.

Fans from other teams have now started following suit and are also tidying up after their own games, according to commentators.

"We believe we can make this contagious," said Tokyo fan Tomomi Kishikawa. "We don't need to push anyone to clean. But if we start, maybe we can be a good example of respect."

Tidiness is widely accepted as a virtue in Japan, particularly in public spaces. It even seems to extend to the players: pictures of the Japanese squad's spotless locker rooms were posted by FIFA site after the team's victory over Germany.


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